Lucky 7! The New Jersey Nets won their 7th game of the season on Saturday night against the also terrible New York Knicks. With a still worst NBA record of 7-55, the Nets actually have a winning streak going, having victories in their last three road games.
In a battle of the bad in basketball, the Nets smacked the Knicks 113-93 at Madison Square Garden to achieve their seventh win of the season. Two of the seven victories for the Nets have been at the expense of their New York neighbors. The teams don’t play each other again. They have split the season series, which will possibly be the only non-losing record the Nets achieve this season.
The Nets missed 12 of their first 13 shots early, but the Knicks managed to come around and out suck them (a term easily applied to much of the Bridge and Tunnel circuit). The Nets took chances. As the second-worst three-point shooting team, the Nets magically made 14-of-24 from way far away. After an 0-18 start for the Nets, the Knicks paid homage to their opponents by misfiring on all of their three-point tries, going 0-18, an NBA record for most three taken without a make.
Knicks fans were not pleased to see their already awful team sink to a new subterranean low. The Garden crowd booed their team. Although New Yorkers are quick to vocalize their anger, the Knicks were especially embarrassing as they were beaten in every statistical category by a team with a .118 winning percentage.
The winning team, however, was thrilled. Net Courtney Lee had 25 points in his first game back after missing three with a sprained
ankle. The victory was so inspiring, Lee may have lost touch with reality a little bit, and by “a little bit” I mean, a lot. “I feel finishing the season we’ll be a pretty good team,” he said, perhaps somehow unaware that the Nets are still in the running to be the worst team in the history of the NBA.
The Nets must win three times in their remaining 20 games to avoid matching or setting the record for fewest wins in a season, a terrible title held by the 9-73 record of the 1972-1973 Philadelphia 76ers.
It is difficult to tell f Lee is five-and-a-half short of a six pack, or just super excited to be able to say something positive after a game. He analyzed the victory carefully. “It shows that we’re growing as a team,” Lee said, “that we’re maturing.” This is true because when you’re at the bottom, there’s no where to go but up.